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Location, size, and extent

Located in the eastern north-central US, Michigan is the 3rd-largest state E of the Mississippi River and ranks 23rd in size among the 50 states.

The total area of Michigan (excluding Great Lakes waters) is 58,527 sq mi (151,585 sq km), of which land takes up 56,954 sq mi (147,511 sq km) and inland water 1,573 sq mi (4,074 sq km). The state consists of the upper peninsula adjoining three of the Great Lakes—Superior, Huron, and Michigan—and the lower peninsula, projecting northward between Lakes Michigan, Erie, and Huron. The upper peninsula extends 334 mi (538 km) E-W and 215 mi (346 km) N-S; the lower peninsula's maximum E-W extension is 220 mi (354 km), and its greatest N-S length is 286 mi (460 km).

Michigan's upper peninsula is bordered on the N and E by the Canadian province of Ontario (with the line passing through Lake Superior, the St. Marys River, and Lake Huron); on the S by Lake Huron, the Straits of Mackinac separating the two peninsulas, and Lake Michigan; and on the SW and W by Wisconsin (with the line passing through the Menominee, Brule, and Montreal rivers). The lower peninsula is bordered on the N by Lake Michigan, the Straits of Mackinac, and Lake Huron; on the E by Ontario (with the line passing through Lake Huron, the St. Clair River, Lake St. Clair, and the Detroit River); on the SE by Ontario and Ohio (with the line passing through Lake Erie); on the S by Ohio and Indiana; and on the W by Illinois and Wisconsin (with the line passing through Lake Michigan and Green Bay). The state's geographic center is in Wexford County, 5 mi (8 km) NNW of Cadillac.

Among the most important islands are Isle Royale in Lake Superior; Sugar, Neebish, and Drummond islands in the St. Marys River; Bois Blanc, Mackinac, and Les Cheneaux islands in Lake Huron; Beaver Island in Lake Michigan; and Belle Isle and Grosse Ile in the Detroit River.

The state's total boundary length is 1,673 mi (2,692 km). The total freshwater shoreline is 3,121 mi (5,023 km).